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Africa and Climate Change: Practical Progress
June 22 @ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm EDT
The negative consequences of climate change are now recognized globally. Africa, despite its low contribution to greenhouse gas emissions, remains the most vulnerable continent. Most coverage of climate change in Africa emphasizes the human suffering and the seeming difficulties of African nations to deal with this great challenge. The vulnerable people of Africa are not responsible for the causes of climate change but they are already paying a price.
This Webinar is an attempt to provide more information about practical progress on climate change for communities in Africa. In particular the Webinar will focus on initiatives taken by African governments, organizations and communities/individuals in Africa to deal with climate change – covering the full range from adaptation to mitigation. In order to help change the perceived narrative about climate change in Africa, our panellists will showcase specific positive strides the continent and its people are making to adapt to and mitigate climate change and its impacts.
Brian Tomlinson is the Executive Director of Aid Watch Canada, a Canadian CSO that focuses on issues related to Canadian and global aid priorities as well as global trends in the development effectiveness of civil society organizations (CSOs). He is the Canadian main researcher into Canada’s official climate finance and author of several studies on this topic. Brian is also an adjunct professor in the Department of International Development Studies at Dalhousie University. He has had a long career working with international civil society organizations in international development. He retired in June 2011 as Senior Policy Analyst (Aid Policy) at the Canadian Council for International Co-operation (CCIC), where he worked for 16 years. He is widely published on Canadian development cooperation. He follows closely trends and issues relating to Canadian international climate finance. At the global level, in 2015/16 he chaired the Monitoring Advisory Group, a 12-person experts group mandated to review the monitoring framework of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, which includes the elaboration of an indicator on CSO enabling environments. He led a process with CSO colleagues globally in 2019 to elaborate and launch the Belgrade Call to Action on closing civic space that was picked up and endorsed by the UN Secretary General. He facilitates several CSO policy working groups through the DAC CSO Reference Group, a platform of about 100 CSOs from across the globe that monitor and advocate for rules and policies governing Official Development Cooperation (ODA) at the OECD Development Assistance Committee.
Dr. Samson Samuel Ogallah is Commonwealth Climate Finance Adviser to the Government of Eswatini. He is a sustainability professional with extensive international experience, and a broad depth of environment, energy, development, and climate systems knowledge. Ogallah has held impressive full time, part-time and consulting positions in different countries across Africa. Prior to joining the Commonwealth, Ogallah was the Senior Climate and Landscape Specialist for Africa at Solidaridad Network. He was the Head of Programmes at the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) and rose to the capacity of Acting Secretary General/Executive Director. He has authored and co-authored several publications including articles, technical reports, book chapters, and journals and widely travelled with speaking and presentation roles at international events. He also co-authored the cross-sectorial issues of the Climate Change Adaptation Technical Report for Nigeria (CCASTR) which is a background document for NASPA-CCN Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the Paris Agreement. Ogallah was part of the team that produced the National Adaptation Strategy and Plan of Action on Climate Change for Nigeria (NASPA-CCN), a national policy document. Dr. Ogallah holds a Bachelor of Technology in Biochemistry and Advanced Diploma in Public Administration from the Federal University of Technology, Yola; Master’s degree in Development Studies from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa, International Certificate in Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation from Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, Norrkoping, Sweden and a Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD.) in Climate Change and Adaptation from the University of Nairobi.
Rex Chapota is a Strategic Opportunities Advisor and Regional Program manager for East and Southern Africa with the Farm Radio International (a non-profit organization); He is leading the Strategy and Growth portfolio as a Senior Advisor in the Office of the Executive Director. Rex is a dynamic International development leader with over twenty years’ experience, driven by a passion for a holistic, sustainable & transformational development of sub Saharan Africa through well thought, system based, demand driven, human centred, digital advisory and communication services. He has previously worked in East and Southern Africa as a Regional Program Manager since 2018. Before joining FRI, he was the founding Chief Executive Officer for over 10 years for Farm Radio Trust in Malawi. Rex has a visionary business perspective & disruptive mindset in making agriculture work in the sub Saharan Africa and especially on the need to rebrand agriculture as the engine for sustainable economic growth even with the advent of climate change challenges. Rex believes that the bright future of Africa is now and lies in well informed and engaged citizenry who are able to contribute to the discourse and narrative around climate change mitigation and adaptation measures towards the emancipation process of their lives. From February 2021, he holds a MSc in Rural Development and a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture.
The webinar will be moderated by Dr. Marcia Burdette, the Deputy Chair of the Africa Study Group. With a PhD in the Political Science from Columbia University (New York, 1979), Marcia Burdette pursued an academic career followed by 25 years with Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She has a longstanding interest in Africa, in particular central southern Africa. Her book Zambia: Between Two Worlds and a series of articles focused on the major economic transition of the country when its new leaders embarked on the nationalization of the copper industry, the country’s main economic engine. Subsequent articles dealt with input industries for Zimbabwe’s agriculture sector in the 1980s and 1990s.